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NMCB-5 completes Evacuation Center Construction on Marshall Islands

Utilitiesman 2nd Class Xiomara Fairley and Builder 3rd Class Anthony Green, deployed with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 5’s Detail Marshall Islands, spread concrete throughout the pad while Steelworker 3rd Class Alfredo Betanzo places additional concrete. U.S. Navy Seabees are constructing an evacuation center at Ennibur, Marshall Islands. NMCB-5 is deployed across the Indo-Pacific region conducting high-quality construction to support U.S. and partner nations to strengthen partnerships, deter aggression, and enable expeditionary logistics and naval power projection. (U.S. Navy photo by Construction Electrician 3rd Class Christian Carnate/Released)
April 27, 2020

U.S. Navy Seabees deployed with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 5’s Detail Marshall Islands, along with help of local Marshallese volunteers, completed construction on their latest addition to the island of Enniburr, the Enniburr Evacuation Center March 30.

The Enniburr Evacuation Center project was a six-month long journey that started in October 2019. The completed Evacuation Center will serve as the Enniburr Island disaster preparedness building.

Joseph Adkin, a Marshallese volunteer and resident who helped build the evacuation center and worked alongside the Seabees is pleased with the final product of the building.

“This is my first time working with Seabees,” said Adkins. “And it is my first time building a place this big. Over the time spent, I’ve learned many things about them and from them. I am happy and thankful of having the opportunity working with the Seabees.”

The 34’ by 50’ evacuation center is located near the Enniburr High School, which is the center of the island. The center has an open area for a gathering point and the two enclosed rooms will be utilized to store emergency goods and materials.

“I am thankful for [the Seabees], what they do for our community and for us,” said Wayne Kopeney, Marshallese volunteer and resident. “It was fun working with Seabees and I’ve learned so many things just from being around them.”

The Seabees also built a water catchment facility, which is the largest public water catchment on Ennibur Island, providing 12,000 gallons of water to the local community. It has a butterfly roof system to collect and store rainwater into eight 1,500 gallon containers. The water catchment facility is centrally located between the medical clinic, police station, and the elementary school—supplying water to several critical public facilities on the island.

NMCB-5 is deployed across the Indo-Pacific region conducting high-quality construction to support U.S. and partner nations to strengthen partnerships, deter aggression, and enable expeditionary logistics and naval power projection. The battalion stands ready to support Humanitarian Aid/Disaster Relief and Major Combat Operations throughout the region.